Madman ‘assassinates’ cops

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A gunman shot and killed two police officers in Bedford-Stuyvesant on Saturday before turning his gun on himself in what New York’s top cop called an “assassinat­ion.”

The shooter opened fire on officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu as they sat in their patrol car at Tompkins and Myrtle avenues that afternoon, police said. Police Commissioner Bill Bratton and Mayor DeBlasio, flanked by city and Police Department brass, mourned the loss and condemned the killing.

“Today two of New York’s finest were shot and killed with no warning, no provocation,” Bratton said. “They were, quite simply, assassinated, targeted for their uniform and for the responsibility they embraced to keep the people of this city safe.”

Ismaaiyl Brinsley approached the officers’ car shortly before 2:50 pm and opened fire with a 9-mm handgun, shooting both officers in the head through the passenger side window, according to Bratton. Brinsley then fled onto the platform of the Myrtle–Willoughby G train stop, with officers close behind, and shot himself in the head, Bratton said. Paramedics transported Brinsley to Brooklyn Hospital Center, and doctors there declared him dead, a report says. Officers recovered a silver, semiautomatic Taurus pistol at the scene, Bratton said.

Liu and Ramos were taken to Woodhull Medical Center, where doctors attempted in vain to save them, Bratton said.

Liu and Ramos belonged to Downtown’s 84th Precinct, but were posted outside the Tompkins Houses on an anti-violence detail, according to the commissioner.

Ramos, 40, had been a policeman for two years and was married with a 13-year-old son, Bratton said. Liu, 32, had been on the force for seven years, and was recently married, he said.

DeBlasio hung his head and closed his eyes as Bratton spoke. When the mayor took the microphone he lashed out at the shooting, describing it as an assault on all New Yorkers.

“When a police officer is murdered it tears at the foundation of our society,” DeBlasio said. “Police are the foundation of our society, and when they are attacked, it is an attack on the very concept of decency.”

The killing comes as New York and cities nationwide are embroiled in protests over the police killings of Gowanus native Eric Garner in Staten Island and Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, neither of which resulted in criminal charges.

Shortly before the shooting in Brooklyn, Brinsley shot his ex-girlfriend in Baltimore County, seriously injuring her, Bratton said, and wrote in Instagram posts that he planned to murder officers as vengeance for the deaths of Garner and Brown, according to reports. “I’m Putting Wings on Pigs Today. They Take 1 of Ours...... Let’s Take 2 of Theirs #ShootTheP­olice,” he reportedly wrote alongside a photo of a silver pistol, adding references to Garner and Brown. Baltimore officials warned the NYPD about the posts, but the word came too late, Bratton said.

Brinsley is said to have lived in Georgia and Bratton said he had unspecified ties to East Flatbush.

The last police officer who died in the line of duty was Officer Dennis Guerra, who perished after responding to an arson in Coney Island in April.

Protest leaders and Borough President Adams, who has been sympathetic to the demonstrations, condemned the murders, saying that they could hurt the cause of police reform. Police union representatives who have accused Mayor DeBlasio of fomenting distrust of officers by speaking in support of the protests lashed out following the murders. On Saturday night, representatives of two police unions said that the mayor has blood on his hands.

“There is blood on many hands tonight. Those that incited violence on the street under the guise of protests that tried to tear down what New York City police officers did every day,” Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association president Pat Lynch said during a press conference outside the hospital. “That blood on their hands starts on the steps of City Hall in the office of the mayor.”

Lynch’s union has been embroiled in a contract dispute with the city since May.

The Sergeant’s Benevolent Association tweeted a similar message.

A video taken in the hallway of the hospital shows dozens of officers turning their backs on DeBlasio as he makes his way to the press conference after meeting with family members of the slain officers.

At 8:30 pm that night, the intersection where the officers were shot was inaccessible for blocks, with police floodlights illuminating the surrounding streets. Police in helmets and body armor patrolled the neighborhood with semiautomatic rifles and K-9 units, and neighbors gathered at the police line. One woman, just returning to the neighborhood with her 8-year-old son, was unable to get to her apartment in the Tompkins Houses, and had only just heard about the shooting. The woman, who declined to give her name, said that the relationship between the community and the police is often tense, but that violence and hatred are never the answer.

“Don’t shoot the police, don’t hate the police,” she said. “They keep us safe.”

Reach reporter Noah Hurowitz at or by calling (718) 260–4505. Follow him on Twitter @noahhurowitz
Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018: Context added. Inaccurate reference to the last officer who died in the line of duty fixed.
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Reasonable discourse

MIke from Williamsburg says:
“When a police officer is murdered it tears at the foundation of our society,” DeBlasio said. “Police are the foundation of our society, and when they are attacked, it is an attack on the very concept of decency.”

That holds true for when police abuse their power. Except the part where police are the foundation of our society. Maybe in DeBlasio's desired police state that part is true. The rule of law is the foundation of our society. That importance of police derives from that, and it is why police abuse erodes the foundation of our society.
Dec. 21, 2014, 10:46 am
Resign from Williamsburg says:
Deblasio is a disgrace and needs to resign.
Dec. 21, 2014, 12:39 pm
Jimmy from Flatbush says:
The PBA are a vile organization trying to continue to promote a toxic "police culture." Do we all remember back in 2011 when the ticket fixing scandal was characterized as an important part of "NYPD culture" by Pat Lynch and his cronies?

How do they think it's acceptable to use these despicable murders as fodder in their fascist "all police are heroes" and "police can do no wrong" campaign?!

Police are supposed to use the least necessary force required to bring a situation under control. Their job is not to "make an example" or immediately apply full force.

Eric Garner was being arrested for a minor infraction. Did he "resist"? That's a secondary question. Why did the police officers even get to that point?!! Why didn't they issue a pink summons an walk away? If they felt, for some unknown reason, he needed to be brought into custody.... Was taking a few minutes to argue with him to much trouble? They had to go straight for aggression? NO. They wanted to "make an example" and "show him who's the boss" by arresting him for something most others would get a piece of paper handed to them for....

This is the problem.

The murder of these cops is horrible, but don't let the PBA use this as an opportunity to derail reforms that *must* take place in the NYPD.

(And these reforms are not just about "punishing" -- it should be about making the police better. Training. Education. And.. yes... getting rid of the bad cops, not defending them.)
Dec. 21, 2014, 1:30 pm
Rufus Leaking from BH says:
Jimmy the answer to the Pink Summons goes to City Hall, and Philip Banks former Deputy Commissioner.

That's where the arrest warrant came from.
Dec. 21, 2014, 1:51 pm
Scott from Park Slope says:
"When a police officer is murdered it tears at the foundation of our society." It seems to me that when the NSA violates the Constitution trillions of times (according to previous NSA whistleblower William Binney) and no one there goes to jail, the foundation of our society has been torn. When the former President & Vice President of the United States and the CIA, as well as the current President of the United States, conspire to commit crimes against humanity by torturing hundreds, and no one gets punished or goes to jail, the foundation of our society as a nation of laws has been destroyed. Add in the executions of Michael Brown and Gurley, and the massive, epic crimes committed by Wall Street every day, and I would say that this assassination is a harbinger of things to come. When you unilaterally violate the social contract that we all live by, you will get blowback.
Dec. 21, 2014, 2:25 pm
Jimmy from Flatbush says:
Rufus -- If that's the case, then why isn't this what the PBA is saying? They're not. They are saying something VERY different. Even if these are the orders they are receiving from "the top" they seem to be fully embracing this as part of their twisted version of "NYPD culture."

By the way, the "Just following orders" excuse doesn't play. There are bad cops, there are cops that cover for the bad cops, and there are good cops... but this last category, the good cops, find themselves hung out to dry by the vile cronies of the PBA and SBA.
Dec. 21, 2014, 2:37 pm
Avi from Williamsburg says:
You know the white transplanted academia, like the ones arrested this week, are jumping for joy over the murders, self congratulating themselves for a job well done.
Dec. 21, 2014, 5:51 pm
Jimmy from Flatbush says:
Avi -- Don't say such stupid things. Or would you like us to make disgusting generalization about your community in Williamsburg? (Ya know, cuz that's appropriate, right?)
Dec. 21, 2014, 6:27 pm
Common Cents from Crown Heights says:
Well at least we won't have to worry about housing and feeding him for the rest of his life. Now ask yourself why someone with a lengthy record of violence is allowed to walk the streets. The deaths of these officers fall on the lazy district attorney office that are all too eager to plead out violent criminals.
Dec. 21, 2014, 9:27 pm
Moses Kestenbaum ODA from williamsburg says:
The mayor is a disgrace , Deblazio should kiss every cop and beg for forgiveness for insulting the NYPD then he should resign
Dec. 21, 2014, 9:43 pm
Common Cents from Crown Heights says:
Yes Bill 'give me your money' De Blasio is the worst Mayor the city has seen. That's what you get when you vote for a person from Boston to be the Mayor of NYC. I remember watching a video of people from Boston after he got elected, they laughed at how stupid NYers were. He, like 99% of people from Boston hate NY plain and simple.
Dec. 21, 2014, 10:23 pm
ty from pps says:
What? Bill DeBlasio has lived in NYC for about 33 years of his 53 years of life... he's been working in the public sector in and for New York... neither of his children have lived in any other city (until their daughter went to college)... but he's "a person from Boston." Hardly a carpetbagger. But, rational thought hasn't ever been on the top of the list for you, right, Common Cents?

The ignorant "real new yorker" force is strong with you, young padawan.
Dec. 21, 2014, 11:22 pm
cat from trap says:
So it is ok for people to silently, misguidedly protest the last 2 bullets that killed Brown, but not ok for the force to do the same?

The Civil Rights Movement did infact occur, contrary to POPULAR contemporary belief, over half a century ago.

What a bunch of romantics.
Dec. 22, 2014, 8:49 am
bkmanhatman from nubrucklyn says:
Yeah. Pat Lynch and the PBA want to stir more violence in hatred so they can protect their vile practicfes. Time for a inspector general like modern armies.
Him and his ilk are wrongly blaming the protesters for this vile act. How about going after the states who made it easy for the shooter to get the gun.
Dec. 22, 2014, 9:26 am
Resign from Brooklyn says:
Enough is enough! The lever of incompetence is so obvious, there should be on consideration to the contrary. He's over his head and needs to go.

From total civil unrest to things as irrelevant, publicly unacceptable industry profiling as the Horse Ban, we need someone that is capable of doing his job and isn't appealing solely to his campaign funders.

RESIGNING would be the best thing he could do for NYC!
Dec. 22, 2014, 11:35 am
Mike from Williamsburg says:
De Blasio's best moments have been since the protests have begun. That it's making people like Pat Lynch and Moses Kestenbaum angry is icing on the cake, but the reform of our terrible police department is necessary whether it makes annoying people sad or not.
Dec. 22, 2014, 12:20 pm
Jimmy from Flatbush says:
These folks calling for de Blasio to resign are adorable. They don't have anything substantive to support this call, just not liking him.

So, de Blasio received 73% of the vote and is delivering on many of his campaign promises (not all of which I support), but he's just pandering "solely to his campaign funders." HAHAHAHAHAHA!

When you're unhappy with the way the city government is working, perhaps the best approach isn't to go straight for "Resign!!!" just sayin'
Dec. 22, 2014, 12:38 pm
John from Bay Ridge says:
DeBlasio has handled this very poorly, because he is still acting like an activist running for office rather than an executive running the City. He should not ignore the need for reform of abusive police practices, but he cannot try to appease a baying mob, which is what much of the protect movement has turned into. Now he has given a thug like Pat Lynch a stick to hit him with, and every time DeBlasio cozies up to a pig like Sharpton his credibility plummets among rational people.

What a mess.
Dec. 22, 2014, 1:46 pm
Common Cents from Crown Heights says:
Well Ty, if I were an irrational person I'd call the authorities to investigate the illegally converted house you live in, but the rational side of me thinks why should your entire family suffer just because you're a troll.
Dec. 22, 2014, 1:54 pm
ty from pps says:
Common Cents -- How exactly am I a "troll" for calling you out for basically calling the mayor a carpetbagger with more connection to Boston (where he lived as a child) than New York City (where he's lived almost all of his adult life and where he has raised a family)?

Yeah. I'm a troll.
Dec. 22, 2014, 2:26 pm
Common Cents from Crown Heights says:
You're a troll because I never called the Mayor a carpetbagger, I called him a person from Boston, which he is. I also said people from Boston don't like NYers, which they don't.
Dec. 22, 2014, 3:09 pm
ty from pps says:
You know what you meant, Common Cents. You said that because he wasn't born here so he's not a "real New Yorker." He never will be... and probably not his children either because his parents weren't born in New York City. It's just so annoying to always hear stupid comment from people like you... over and over and over.

He CHOSE to live in New York. He CHOSE to raise his family here.

What other things are inappropriate for someone to do if they only spend 30 year of their life in a city, but not their years as a child? Is someone like that allowed to have any opinions about NYC? Or should they leave those opinions to the great minds of "real New Yorkers" like you?
Dec. 22, 2014, 3:46 pm
kyle from south slope says:
hey guys, what is pat lynch really after?
Dec. 22, 2014, 8:35 pm
Jay from Nyc says:
Look a crazy got a gun,and nothing good ever come out if that, and thats really the root of all this. Its not pat lynchs disgraceful comments, its not de blasio its gun violence and gthe fallout from gun violence. Lall of you are hyper focused on little minute details that are not important and almost eveey single poster on jere has comoletly missed the larger picture here.
You all need to be focused on the fact that a guy who has been arresred 19 times and tried to kill himself twice, his most recent attempt less than a year ago was able to acquire a gun, the shoot his ex girlvirend, post stuff on the internet and then get all the way from balitmore maryland, about 200 miles to brooklyn ny where he committed this terrible and senseless crime.why the hell is a guy like this able to get his hands on a gun?
Dec. 23, 2014, 10:40 am

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